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Prospect Report: Angle, Hjorth each score in early season faceoff

Sherwood has two-goal game but Monsters fall; College hockey gets under way

by Jeff Svoboda @JacketsInsider /

If you're a fan of Blue Jackets and their prospects, then Saturday night's game that featured the Sarnia Sting and Windsor Spitfires was a good time. 

The matchup in Windsor's WFCU Centre featured two players Columbus drafted in summer's NHL entry draft -- fourth-round pick Eric Hjorth, a defenseman from Sweden who plays for the Sting, and seventh-round pick Tyler Angle, a centerman who suits up for the Spitfires. 

And in a wild game -- be thankful the Blue Jackets haven't drafted either goalie, I guess -- both players scored as the home Spitfires took an 8-5 decision.  

Hjorth scored his second goal with the Sting early in the second period, tying the game at 2. It was a play that showed off the defenseman's impressive offensive instincts, as he cut into the slot, took a pass and wired a shot home. (You can see highlights from the game here.)

Angle's goal was an empty-netter that set the final score, but it continued what has been a red-hot start for the now 19-year-old, who has six goals in his first nine games this year in his fourth season in Windsor. 

Hjorth, meanwhile, has also been impressive after missing most of his last two seasons with inury. The 18-year-old has a 2-6-8 line in his first seven games, showing off the offensive ability that made the Blue Jackets choose him with their first pick in the summer's draft despite his injury history. 

Meanwhile, also in the OHL, 2018 first-round pick Liam Foudy is yet to dress this season as he continues to rehab an injury picked up while playing with Columbus at the NHL Prospects Tournament in Traverse City last month, but last week he was named one of London's co-captains for this season. 

Also, he's not technically a Blue Jackets prospect, but while we're north of the border, how about the start by Egor Sokolov? The big 6-4 Russian played with the Blue Jackets in Traverse City and was invited to the team's main camp as well, and that experience has perhaps helped push him to a hot start. Through nine games this year with Cape Breton of the QMJHL, Sokolov has an 8-8-16 line. 

Monsters Monday 

One week after beginning their season with a two-game sweep on the road at Laval, the Blue Jackets' AHL affiliate in Cleveland found themselves on the opposite end of such a result, dropping the first two home games of the year Friday and Saturday vs. Syracuse. 

The opener Friday night in the newly remodeled Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse was a taut affair with the Crunch taking a 2-1 win. Sam Vigneault scored the lone goal for Cleveland, finishing in front off a nifty feed from Adam Clendening, while Matiss Kivlenieks made 22 saves. 

Saturday's game was a much more open affair, but the Monsters fell by a 6-3 score. Cleveland actually led 2-1 before Syracuse scored three straight goals and never looked back. AAA Blue Jackets product Kole Sherwood scored two of Cleveland's goals, while Stefan Matteau had the other. Veini Vehvilainen went the whole way in net and stopped 31 shots. 

Tweet from @monstershockey: Ya love to see it.

Through four games, Sherwood and Zac Dalpe each have two goals to tie for the team lead, while Dalpe also is tied for the points lead with three. Clendening (1-2-3), Calvin Thurkauf (1-2-3) and Justin Scott (0-3-3) also have a trio of points. 

On Campus 

College hockey is fully under way now with teams across the country getting going over the weekend. A quick look at the four CBJ draft picks who laced 'em up.  

Carson Meyer was kept without a point, but the Ohio State forward who was taken in the sixth round of the 2017 draft saw team success as the Buckeyes captured the IceBreaker Tournament in Toledo with a shootout win over Western Michigan and a victory in the title game vs. RIT.  

UConn forward Kale Howarth (fifth round, 2017) had seven shots on goal over the weekend but no points as the Huskies had a rough weekend with losses to Army West Point and RPI at home. 

Minnesota defenseman Robbie Stucker (seventh round, 2017) saw action in both games as the Golden Gophers split at Colorado College to open the campaign. He did not have a point but registered two shots on goal.  

North Dakota goalie Peter Thome (sixth round, 2016) did not see action as the Fighting Hawks had no trouble with a home sweep of overmatched Canisius by scores of 5-0 and 8-1. 

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